Tough day doesn’t dampen Fischer’s all-state finish

From Herald Staff Reports

It turns out the biggest problem for Andy Fischer and the crew of Southridge coaches that traveled to Indianapolis for the state wrestling finals at Bankers Life Fieldhouse wasn’t grabbing a win, but bringing enough attire for a two-day stay.

“I said to Fischer, ”˜I don’t know what to do. I didn’t bring any clothes for tomorrow.’ (Andy) said, ”˜I didn’t either,’” coach Dave Schank recalled with a laugh.

Fischer couldn’t recapture the magic of Friday’s upset win over semistate champion Ryan Jankowski of South Bend St. Joseph as the Raider senior sustained three losses Saturday, but an eighth-place finish at the 182-pound weight class was more than enough to cap what Schank called “an amazing weekend.”

“When throughout your program you only have a handful of kids that have ever placed, it’s a big deal,” Schank said. “Everybody had so much fun that we want to do it more often. ...We’ve got to do this every year.”

The rest of Fischer’s weekend was a series of close calls. He suffered a pin with three seconds remaining in the first period against Yorktown’s Myron Howard-Anderson, sending him into the consolation bracket. Fischer jumped to an early 4-0 lead against Jonathan Morales of Western Boone before losing a 9-7 decision in his next match. And in his final bout of the day, he again sustained a late first-period pin against Jeffrey Wiseman of Penn.

But Friday night’s first-period pin was enough of a consolation for Fischer and Schank, who said “I’ve seen the video probably 50 times and every time I watch I still get tears in my eyes.”

In a series of events that Schank said followed the Raiders’ gameplan to a T, Fischer grappled Jankowski to the ground early and was able to employ his cradle for a pin at the 36-second mark. The upset was enough to excite even opponents as eventual 182 state champion Damien Chambers rushed to the mat to congratulate Fischer.

“To me personally, this has been something we have wanted for a while,” Schank said of the all-state finish. “It just kind of substantiates your program. We had a great year and this just puts a cherry on top of the cupcake.

“(It) couldn’t have happened to a better kid and a better family,” he added.

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